Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Denis: Newest Member of the Church in Cristalina!

The highlight of the week was definitely Denis's baptism on Saturday!! Behind our little white chapel there is a pool that's our baptismal font. A super humbling experience to know that no matter where you are in the world, the priesthood is still the same.
On Sunday, Denis was given the gift of the Holy Ghost, sustained as the newest member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in Cristalina, and received the Aaronic Priesthood. :) A super special experience, we're so happy for him!!!!!!!
Denis is too funny. When we went to teach him Sunday night:
"What were those guys doing when they put my hands on my head? Did something happen?..."
us: "Haha yes Denis, you received the priesthood."
:) It was great explaining that to him.

Denis is already fitting into the ward, he shares about how's he a completely different person than from who he was before. How it has affected his life entirely. He now goes to bed early and gets up early. He eats meals at the right time. He is SO much happier. He told us about how much he loves the church... he is definitely one of the most humble, simple people I have ever met, and I know he will be one of the strongest members here because of his loyalty to the Lord. It's great to see him smiling<3

We found lots of new investigators this week, we've decided to work in different parts of our area... the Lord really does guide us.
On Thursday my mom (trainer) came to visit me!!!!!!!! Actually, she's Sister Training Leader now so she came to do splits with us so it was super fantastic to see her again <3 
This week our focus was on inviting everybody we meet to be baptized, it was super fantastic and helped us find lots of new people!!!

All is well in Zion!!!!
Sister Hill

Tuesday, July 21, 2015

A Full Chapel

This week was good and suuuuuper long, but it was good! We went to Jardim Ingá on Wednesday for our first zone meeting of the transfer... since Cristalina is in the middle of nowhere and it's 3 1/2 hours by bus to get there :) We received some great training there and then came back to Cristalina for English class.

Friday started with a popcorn cake (it consists of a bowl of popcorn with sugar... and a candle stuck in the top;) from Sister Costancio, and a cookie cake (consists of cookies put on a plate drizzled in sweetened condensed milk with a lit candle stuck in the middle;) from the other Sisters <3 we worked for a few hours, got milkshakes and went to the crystal market... then we went home to grap the Progress Report for a meeting with our ward mission leader. When we got in the dark chapel through the back door, there was a surprise party that the Elders and Sisters had planned, aww :) Pictures are on Elder Nordfelt's camera :P Elder Todt makes amazing cakes o.O What a nice gathering it was :) My companion is waaaaay good at lying #iseriouslythoughtweweregoingtoameeting great birthday :) (and yes mom, the package arrived...got it on wednesday, just in time:)

Saturday we visited Edivaldo and he took us to his cousin's house down the street, it was great to visit with her. It was super hilarious at the end of the lesson, when we asked Maria if she would come to church with us the next day she said she wasn't sure because the members of the other church come to pick her up from her house sunday mornings to take her to their meetings (que chato -_-), so she said she wouldn't commit to anything. We then asked Edivaldo if he would go to church the next day, and he promptly replied "No." Sister Costancio said that she noticed both of our faces completely dropped as we were completely in shock... he had been telling us all week he would go to church with us, and all of a sudden he said 'no'... he continued, 'Tomorrow I'm going to your church!' and we busted up laughing because he had completely thought we were inviting him to go to another church's meeting... ;) #missionarylife

And he went for the first time! It was great seeing him in church, he seemed happy :) Denis was there too, he's still preparing to be baptized this Saturday!!! We're going to work super hard this week to prepare him so that he can also feel that he's ready. He fell into an old drinking problem about a month ago and stopped, and I think he's a little afraid of messing up again but we know he won't. :) He's awesome. And at FHE last night gave us 4 sisters necklaces too cute <3

Today for p-day we went to a cool little mini-beach, it was sooooo beautiful. Great waterfalls.. too bad we cant get in the water :P but it was great anyway! we played soccer and guitar :)

And these days I'm obsessed with the kites that the boys fly at the end of the city.. in mine and Sister's area, we see TONS of these paper kites every day, and I wanted one. So I ordered one from a guy in the street, and when I went the next day to pick it up he hadn't made it yet -_- and a boy was like 'you want mine? 2 reais!' #minhaprimeirapipanoBrasil #myfirstbraziliankite

all is well in Zion!
have a great week!

Tuesday, July 14, 2015

Denis...does indeed exist! God knows His children

When I got here in Cristalina, Sister Costancio told me about our investigator Denis who would be baptized that firstSaturday.
Only thing was... he pretty much disappeared off the face of the earth.
2 times Sister Costancio thought she saw him in the road, and when we ran after 'him' and got there he disappeared.
For 3 weeks we showed up at his house almost every other day asking for him, and his mom (his family doesn't really want anything to do with the church) always said that he was never home.
I doubted that Denis even existed... but Sister Costancio told me that he is absolutely elect, so ready to become part of the Church.
This week Sister decided she was going to write him a letter and drop it off at his house. She wrote the letter for him, telling him that he needed to come back to Church because it would be worth it... we put in some pass-along cards with a little tiny FSY pamphlet, and gave it to his mom to give to him.

I had completely forgotten that we had dropped off the letter, until as we were ready to leave home Sunday morning, our district leader calls us and while Sister Costancio is on the phone she gets super duper duper happy and starts yelling out of excitement, and she has this HUGE smile on her face... so I analyzed from the situation that an investigator had just gotten to the chapel, but I had no idea who it could be. Until she hung up and said DENIS!!!! And then I realized that yes, he does exist! :)

We got to the chapel and he was there, waiting for sacrament meeting to start. Right as it was about to begin he said 'Irmãs, I gotta be baptized soon.' :) We taught him about the Word of Wisdom again last night and he will be baptized July 25th.

This week broke my record for most lessons taught in a week :) We really focused on member involvement this week, it was super good.

I love mutual with the youth here, this week we played charades with scripture stories. 2 of our investigators, João Pedro and Maria... they're twins! 14 years old :) they went to mutual and liked it!! Maria teaches seminary for the Catholic church, so they were a little confused about the Book of Mormon stories because they didn't know any of them... but it was a great teaching experience as we had the opportunity to explain the Book of Mormon better to her <3 they're wonderful. We don't know why they didn't come to church yesterday, we need to go there and see what happened since they said they were for sure going to go.

This week was much warmer than last week... I like the sun :) I'd be fine if winter never came back around... a 1-week winter was cold enough for me o.O

And we're still working on strengthening the Relief Society. This Sunday we only had 4 sisters in RS again... I taught the class about Marriage & Family from Ezra Taft Benson #trunky #kkk #jk #;) It's a little weird teaching to a small crowd, but it's great and I love it still :) We're setting a goal to read the Book of Mormon together as a RS, we're going to start with 3 chapters per week :) #babysteps 
We're also starting to say the Relief Society Purpose together at the beginning of every class... #ididntevenknowtheRShadapurposeliketheYW #itsfantastic The Spirit is fantastic :)

Agora estou muito mais confortável escrevendo em português :) Esta transferência está passando muito rápido, não gosto. Mas faz parte de vida :) Sou muito grata por todas as coisas que eu estou aprendendo aqui na missão, eu acho que uma das maiores coisas que eu já tenho aprendido é o valor da minha família, e da Restauração do evangelho de Jesus Cristo. Eu sei que nada acontece por acaso, que todos nós estamos aqui na Terra neste tempo por algum motivo. O Senhor tem um plano por nós! Ele acredita em nosso sucesso. Sei que Ele quer que sejamos felizes.
Nunca desista, nunca desista, nunca desista!
Compartilhe seu testemunho com alguém que precisa esta semana :)

Amo todos vocês! Tenha uma ótima semana!
Oh yeah, and this week marked 10 months in the mission. #weird #timepassesbywaytoofastouthere

Sister Hill

Tuesday, July 7, 2015

Happy July 4th - Crystals Everywhere - Pictures and Pictures!!

Elder Nordfelt and I celebrated July 4th by singing the National Anthem while Elder Todt waved E. Nordfelts American flag tie... it was quite a sight. Wish I could send video :)
And I played the guitar and we sang the 2 hymns from the English hymnbook.
We ate almoço at a members house... Brazilian barbecue is the greatest thing alive. #churrasco #salgado As I was sitting eating this wonderful salty meat that is the most wonderful thing everrrr, I realized that Irmão Leão lives on the army base. And I realized that on July 4th I was eating brazilian barbecue on a Brazilian military base. #outofallthedays It was quite ironic for me. :)

Cristalina lives up to its name, there are crystals everywhere here. We went to the World Crystal shop, its pretty amazing. I love picking them up off the ground :)

This weeks English class, only Rodrigo (15) came. After the class I talked with him a little about the Plan of Salvation and marked to visit his family on Saturday. We went there on Saturday before mutual... and his mom is SUPER Catholic, it scared me a little. But the Lord is so good, and the Spirit truly teaches the lessons that it just amazes me... she agreed with every part of the Plan. Her husband Rosival is super good, he said that he has always wondered where he will go after this life and that he has always wondered if he really does have a purpose here.

Ive been learning a lot about the authority we have as missionaries. That we have truly been called of God to preach as literal representatives of Jesus Christ. Cristalina is a SUPER Catholic area... and many people hate us here. The Elders especially, and us as Sisters too. On Sunday we were walking to church, and a man was in the street and asked us if we are evangelicals. ´´no, we are Christians.´´ And he said, ´ah, the Mormons. Ive studied much about your religion, how the center is in Salt Lake City... I suggest you search for the true church.´´
We dont know if he heard, but Sister Costancio said ´Thanks, we invite you to do the same.`´ #arrochecompanheira

Im loving this area... still adjusting, but I love our little group :) Yesterday we had even less people in church than last week, only 4 sisters in the Relief Society... we gave a training about visiting teaching, we are planning to help the sisters to really visit their sisters and help the RS grow. <3

Beijos from Cristalina, Goiás :D

Amo todos vocês
Sister Hill

Cristalina <3 the kids here are super hipster... everybody here flies kites and does cool tricks on their bikes. #wishiwasthiscool