Monday, November 24, 2014

Olá, família e amigos!

This week was good. Sister Alves and I really concentrated on finding new people to teach, because the majority of our investigators were not progressing, and many investigators with baptismal dates fell through. So we did a lot of finding! A lot of clapping in front of the gates of peoples' homes.

We have a new investigator, Helica! We met her husband on the street, he said he wasn't interested in the church but that his wife was searching for a church. So she's our new investigator! She's an elect. She came to church this week, stayed for the whole 3 hours. We gave her a Book of Mormon after teaching the Restoration, I'm excited to see how she's been doing with that.

Rodrigo and Andreia told us that they read the Book of Mormon together every night.

There's been lots of random rain and thunderstorms here in Tocantins..and when it rains here it POURS. Like flooding. The last time there was super huge lightning and thunder, me and the 3 sisters in my house heard the light crack super close to our house, we could FEEL it. When we got on the bus we passed maybe 10 trees that had been hit by lightning and broken in the road. I think it's awesome, lightning is super cool :)

Nothing super exciting this week, besides our new investigators we're working with.

Até mais,
Sister Hill

Monday, November 17, 2014

Amigos é família,
Esta semana foi bem! Não facil...mas bem. My portuguese improves every day. Every day I improve just a little bit. It's the most amazing thing. The sisters in my house are so patient with me. I remember the first day that I was in the field, the first week, I could barely converse with my companion, and couldn't converse at ALL with the other girls in my house, Sister Constancio and Sister Soares (whom I love a LOT, btw). And now we all talk and laugh throughout the entire day. I love them.
We taught Jorge and Francisca the commandments yesterday, Jorge is INCREDIBLE in that he is definitely um eleto, one of our elects... he's so receptive of the gospel, I know that he was prepared to receive it. But Francisca, his soon-to-be wife, we don't know. She hasn't been progressing, she hasn't been keeping her commitments, she hasn't been reading the Book of Mormon and she doesn't come to church...we're trying really hard to help her. And she loves her coffee, her café, and I know the Word of Wisdom is going to be a hard thing for her. But we have faith in her still!! We just reeeeally want her to understand the importance of them getting married to be baptized, not the action but the principle, the doctrine...there's meaning behind this!! Her salvação...I have to always remind myself that people have agency. Sigh. Still getting used to that.

It's a nice balmy 110degrees Fahrenheit here in Palmas, Tocantins!! Wow! Gotta love that sun!! I got my first real sun today as I only put sunscreen on my arms and feet today, figuring that would be
Today for P-day we went to "Taguarusul" and climbed this huge mountain, the view was BEAUTIFUL. Pictures for you of that. :) And also we saw some macaws on our way to the ônibus the other day!!! There were like four in the tree! Some pictures of that as well.
Hope you are all well. I love and miss you!!!
I love 1 Nephi 3:7 because the Lord is going to ask us to do some hard things...but we CAN do them! He will never ask us to do something without knowing that we can do it. It just takes trust. <3
Com amor,
Sister Hill

Thanks for the update!! It's always nice to hear about what's happening there at home. :)
P-day we wake up and clean the house, but this morning was a little different because we had to wake up at about 5h30 to get on the bus by 7 to head to that city (i can never say or spell the name of it, Sister Soares had to help me type it last time hahaha.) And we climbed that cool mountain!! The view was INCREDIBLE, It was about 35 minutes of hiking straight uphill, I thought I was going to die. But we made it! And had an awesome time just talking with our district. Attached is a picture of our district at the top of the mountain:)

Elder Chamberlain (from Blanding, Utah) was taking the picture, get this: his uncle is Grant Christian, the man who gave me my patriarchal blessing!!!!! How crazy is that!!!!!!

I got super burnt today. I put sunscreen on my arms and my feet, and I put foundation on this morning and figured I was good for the neck got suuuuper burned. BUT it's okay, I know it will go away eventually. And I'm confident enough that I don't let it bother me.
The zone conference is TOMORROW, that's when somebody is going to go pick up my package and hopefully bring it back in time for me to receive it next week!
I haven't heard anything about the second package. So the thing is is that 1) it's hard to mail things to Brasil, 2) it's even harder to mail things to Brasília once you get it in Brasil, and 3) it's ridiculously hard to get packages here in Palmas. I'm not expecting any Christmas package from you guys, if you already sent one haha I'll probably get it in January or February. :) It just takes so long to get it to my area.

It's been about 110, 115 degrees F here... YEAH it's toasty. I thought St. George was hot! Ha! We take our shower in the morning, and then I'm already super sweaty by the time we've been proseliting for about an hour. Mm love that #missionarylife

In the picture with my district Sister Soares is the sister I'm sitting next to, she arrived with me so we're the "babies" of the house, both our first area and our first everything...I love her! Mom she's like a Brasilian Alexandra!!!!!! To me she looks like Alexandra, I love her to death. Their personalities are different but I remember the first time I saw Sister Soares from a distance I tooootally thought of Alexandra<3

I'm so pleased to hear that the Primary program went well! I know you're such a good primary president<3 I wish I could have been there to see it.
You remember those family pictures that we took together before I left? Do you have them? I want to see them!! :)

Monday, November 10, 2014

Oi de Brasil!

This week was good! Lots of searching for new people to teach, lots of walking...don't worry, not nearly as exciting as last week! The remains of the bite are almost all the way gone, yay!! And my foot is about back to normal size, woohoo:)

Right now we are teaching Jorge and Francisca who have 2 children, Lara (9) and Jorginho (2). Jorge and Francisca have a wedding date for December 13th and a baptismal date for the same day, but Jorge progresses spiritually waaay faster than Francisca. He loves coming to church and just eating a spiritual feast in classes and sacrament meeting, Francisca wasn't in church yesterday. But Lara told us in sacrament meeting yesterday that she thinks she wants to be baptized in this church...she's awesome. Jorge told us yesterday that he thinks that him and Francisca should be taught separately since they're on different levels with their testimonies right now. We'll see how this works out!

The language gets better every day. I'm finally past that little bump of "UGH I CAN'T DO THIS". Every day I improve a little-tiny-eensy-weensy bit, and I know that in 6 months I'm going to look back and laugh at all of the things I said wrong. :) Thank goodness Heavenly Father lets us learn through processes and doesn't expect us to know everything in a day or two, eh?

Our new house came through!! I think we're moving this week. It has a bright pink gate and a bright green seriously looks like a watermelon. Our watermelon house. Or our Natal Casa. I'm excited:) Our house now is puny.

We have a friend, Mirian. Missionaries, Elders, came to her door about 8 years ago and introduced the gospel to her. She loves the missionaries. But she isn't baptized because she isn't married to her spouse, and he isn't at all interested in the gospel. Until this weekend!! We fasted with Mirian on Saturday that her family would be united. She also has a 17-year-old son, Jonas, who normally just locks himself in his room and never says hi to us when we come unless Mirian makes him.
But Saturday night, it was 4 sister missiories, 2 members, Mirian, her spouse and Jonas!!!!!!!! And her spouse even started to cry while we were teaching. I have such a testimony of fasting!!!!! All these years and he will finally let us teach him. I get butterflies just thinking about it :) they agreed to let us come for Reunião Familiar (FHE) Wednesday night. I can't wait!!!!

Still eating rice and beans and meat every day and loving it!!! The food here is so incredible. Sorvete, chocolate, carne... it's fantastic. Haven't gotten sick yet. Yet. And still drinking 3 liters of water a day!

Até mais,
Sister Hill

Monday, November 3, 2014

Pictures from the mission

Olá família e amigos!

Esta semana foi...interesante!
Sunday (I think?) I got a mosquito bite on my left leg. And I didn't think anything of it...until a couple days later when I would feel pain shoot up my leg when I stepped down on it. I wish I could attach a picture!! It was this little ball of a bite, with a fist-sized dark red oval-shape around the bite, and then about halfway up my leg it was super red and hot. Yeah it was bad. So I refused to go to the hospital, but Sister Alvez and Irmão Itamar (a member in my ward) didn't give me a choice and drove me to the hospital. I couldn't understand ANYTHING that was going on. All I could tell the doctor was that it hurt, and it happened "dois dias atrás" (2 days ago). He gave me a prescription through Irmão, and the amazing Irmão Itamar spent about 20 minutes driving me and Sister Alvez halfway across town and back to pick me up medication.
I'm all good now!! The bite has gone down day by day. It just made for an interesting week when on Wednesday it hurt so badly to walk, that I slept at a member's house for 5 hours while Sister Alvez taught lessons with Rita, a ward missionary in our ward. So yeah, it was just a super weird week.

Besides that interesting part of my week, all is well. Tudo bom. :) I still get frustrated with the language, but at this point I've just accepted that I don't know it yet. Blah. Which is frustrating. But I know it will come someday!! I have tried to remember HOPE, ESPERANÇA this week.
One of my favorite things about the português language:
In inglês, we have the word HOPE. To HOPE for something is to trust in Heavenly Father that He will fulfill His promises to you. That is literally what HOPE is.
In português, the verb "ESPERAR" means three different things:
1. to hope for
2. to expect
3. to wait for

When we hope for something, when we trust in our Heavenly Father that He will fulfill His promises to us, we EXPECT that He will fulfill His promises, and then we WAIT. How cool is that! We can actually know with a surety, a perfect hope that our Father in Heaven will keep His word. "I, the Lord, am bound when you do what I say..." D&C 82:10.

The work is good. It's hard, but it's simple. Simple doesn't mean easy! Cause the mission isn't easy. But it's simple. Be obedient, and work hard. <3

Boa semana por todo o mundo!
Muito amor,

Sister Hill

hashtags for the week:
#justsmileandwaveboys (from Madagascar, anybody?)