Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Paula's Decision...An EXCITING DAY!!!

Yesterday was an exciting day as Paula told us that she finally decided who she wants to baptize her...
ALEXANDRE her brother who just turned 16 :) Made us sooooo happy!!
She's doing great, passed a pre-interview and this week we're going to read the Book of Mormon with her and maybe watch a couple talks from President Monson.

We found a lady in the street waiting for someone to drop off her washing machine, when the guy got there she let us in to share a message with her. We taught her the Restoration with her daughter, Rayanne. She liked it a LOT, we left the Book of Mormon with her and invited her to church.
On Sunday she came with Rayanne!!!!! We were so happy to see them. I was conducting the hymns yesterday so I got to see her smiling in sacrament meeting <3 she was just glowing!! You can really tell that she fell the Spirit super strongly.
We went back last night after church to see how they liked it, and she couldn't stop talking about how good she felt there. That people come to her house all the time and invite her to their churches, but that she felt so good about our lesson that she actually went to church <3 she is truly incredible, a very spiritual person. <3
We had marked 3 Nephi 11 for her to read in the Book of Mormon, but her little granddaughter pulled out the post-it note... so she opened and read another part. Turns out that she read from 2 Nephi 25 to about 2 Nephi 31... the chapter about the gospel of Jesus Christ. It was so perfect and really touched her. #nocoincidences

After we were talking for a few minutes, her husband's co-worker got there with his wife. We taught the Restoration again with the pamphlet and the Book of Mormon and marked a baptismal date with everybody for September 12th.

The Lord truly knows His children!!! I have such a testimony of this!! He really does know us, and He really does answer our prayers!! I know that this is HIS work, that everything is truly in His hands.
I'm so grateful to be a part of all this. <3

Be an answer to someone's prayer today!!
All is well in Zion. <3

Sister Hill

Monday, August 17, 2015

Going to Church on a Tractor...yeah!

This week was interesting.  Thursday night we were headed to a lesson (our first visit with our miracle family that came to church on Sunday) and I was not feeling good at all. Worst I've felt in a while.
And when we got to their house I found out why. If I hadn't run to the bathroom when I did (two times during our visit at their house) I would have thrown up all over our investigators' living room while my companion was telling the First Vision. That would so not have been a pretty sight.
But with some rest on Friday all is well in Zion once again. :) Word's got it that it's some virus floating around Cristalina right now, the hospitals and health posts were full of gente waiting to be cured too. :P 3 of the Elders got it too. I was just happy to know that it wasn't Irmã's food that we ate that day. Cause I like her food.

Paula is amazing!!!!! She came to church for the 4th time yesterday, and this week she told us that she got an answer to her prayer... she'll be baptized on August 29th!!!! We're so excited for her <3 <3 <3 Saturday night at the pizzaria she announced to everybody about her baptismal date and everybody is so happy for her. We couldn't tell anyone about it... it was hard since everyone cares about her so much! We're suuuuper happy about it.

Yesterday an Irmão came to church on his tractor. #ofcourseihadtotakeapic

Amo todos vocês!! Tenham uma boa semana. Beijos de Cristalina <3
Com amor,
Sister Hill

Tuesday, August 11, 2015

Sis Heck - my Beloved MTC Companion - and other tender mercies

Oi pessoal! This week was good and we worked haaaard. The Lord blessed us <3

I think it was Tuesday that we found a worker guy named Amilton in the street and we contacted him (this week we tried to talk to everybody...) and he was super receptive and said he would even come to church this week and bring his family! (every person in the street says they'll come to church #southamericamissionprobs)

And on Sunday, Sister Costancio was giving a talk and I saw that a little group of people showed up at the door... I was like 'who is this man?.....' and I looked at his face and recognized that it was Amilton, who had brought his wife and three children. I didn't recognize him at all because when we found him he was all dirty, having just finished working, and in a bright yellow Banco do Brasil shirt... and he came to church all fancy in a collared shirt and with his entire family, and it was so funny seeing Sister Costancio's face as she was trying not to get a huge grin on her face during the middle of her talk :) They were our miracle family!!!!! And they stayed until the 3rd class when the yw wanted to go home, but they said for sure they're going to come next week. We really feel that the Lord blessed us with this miracle because we busted our tails this week in finding new people to teach.

And PAULA. Paula is the sister & daughter of some recent converts in the ward, her brother (15) is super active, always participating in the lessons with the Elders, never misses Church... and when Alexandre was baptized along with their other brother and their mom, Paula (21) felt pressured and decided she didn't want to be baptized. And she's never accepted missionaries before. But Sister Costancio and I feel like she's our best friend, we see her all the time and we gave a Book of Mormon to her a couple weeks ago and taught her the Restoration. But we haven't pressured anything on her.
Long story short... yesterday was her 3rd time coming to church. After almoço the Elders had a baptism, and she came and really liked it.
And we had a super spiritual 'lesson' (conversation) with her about the Gospel of Jesus Christ, and she said the closing prayer and it was one of the most sincere prayers I've ever heard. #wesetagoalwithher #August29th She's one of the first people I've met in my mission that I really feel like in the Pre-mortal Existence, Sister Costancio and I promised that we would find her and help her to know the restored gospel <3

Today is my 11-month mark. :) Time flies by way too fast. I love my mission and I am so grateful to see how my relationship with my Savior is changing me. <3
This week I read and studied Alma 5, and a verse caught my eye that I haven't pondered in a while:

14 And now behold, ask of you, my brethren of the church, have ye spiritually been born of GodHave ye received his image in your countenances? Havye experienced this mighty change in your hearts?

Brethren of the church, have we received His image in our countenances? When people look at us and talk with us, can they feel that we are disciples of the Lord Jesus Christ? Can they feel our testimonies of the restored gospel? Have we experienced this mighty change in our hearts? I loved every one of these questions. I know that God has blessed us with knowledge of this great work for a reason! I know that people feel and observe the way we act and respond. They see a difference. May we always be making sure that we have the image of Jesus Christ in our countenances. <3

Muito amor! Beijos!
Sister Hill

After Having Lunch with Denis:)

Sister Heck (companion from MTC) and I at Mission Conference <3

Monday, August 3, 2015

One more transfer with my beloved Sister Constancio

Transfers!!! We were all super nervous... our district got super close, it happens like when you see the same 5 missionaries EVERY DAY.
But transfer came...
and me and Sister Costancio are together for another transfer!!!
The surprise was that Sister Picolo and Sister Ortiz were transferred.. and President's sending another set of Elders.
So Sister Costancio and I finished our move (finally...it was a long move/weeknd o.O)...to the chapel!
We are now living in the little white house/chapel. :) It is much closer to district meetings. And sacrament meeting. Haha. #justopenthedoor

This week was a long week, lots of contacting and looking for new people to teach. Our area is still super Catholic.
We had an interesting lesson with a lady the other day. We found her sweeping outside her house, invited her to church and when she saw that we "speak of Jesus" she got super excited and brought us in her house and called to her daughter... "Marcela, these girls speak of Jesus!". Marcela, 5 years old, didn't look pleased to see us at first. But when her mother informed that we do speak of Jesus, she finally accepted us. And then called to her older brother... "Hetor, there are girls here who speak of Jesus!"
While we were thinking this family was absolutely ELECT, we taught them about baptism (as they're not super ridiculously Catholic) and the Gospel, then when we invited them to go with us to church on Sunday (and at this point in the lesson I am already imagining this woman as the future Relief Society president), she told us that they did not want to change religion and would never be baptized in the Church. #sigh

And we had a sad moment when we went to visit Edivaldo who had a baptismal date for August 1st, we went to set a later date... when he told us that he wouldn't be coming to church anymore because...
his brother decided to open a church in their house!
we were in completely shock.
But he showed us in their garage they have a big banner with the name of the 'church' with some plastic chairs where they're going to put the church and everything. And he said that he won't be coming to church anymore because now there is a church muuuch closer to him.
We explained the Restoration and Priesthood to him [again] and told him how not anybody can just start a church in their house...
So that was definitely our heartbreak this week. So we've been focusing on finding new people with potential that actually want to hear about the restored gospel. :)

Super grateful to have one more transfer with my beloved companion <3 it's special for me that this will be the 4th transfer I'll have living with Sister Costancio <3

This week I discovered that Romans 5 has to be one of the most profound chapters of scripture ever written. The words about the Fall and the Atonement are absolutely incredible to me. And it repeats exactly what Elder Holland said in his talk this last General Conference.
Before the mission I really struggled to understand how the Fall could have been made right if God gave them 2 commandments, and it was impossible to keep them both.
 17 For if by one man’s offence death reigned by one; much more they which receive abundance of grace and of the gift of righteousness shall reign in life by one, Jesus Christ.)

 18 Therefore as by the offence of one judgment came upon all men to condemnation; even so by the righteousness of one the free gift came upon all men unto justification of life.

 19 For as by one man’s disobedience many were made sinners, so by the obedience of one shall many be made righteous.

I struggled with understanding the Fall before the mission. But Romans 5 is the most perfect chapter. Because it explains so perfectly, so purely, that yes the Fall was imperfect. But Christ's sacrifice was more perfect than the Fall was imperfect. <3

All is well in Zion. <3 Thank you for your love and support and prayers!
Sister Hill